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What Can I Stop Hot Flashes From Menopause?

by Dawn Thiery
  • Overview

    During or before the onset of menopause, most women will experience hot flashes, which are caused by declining levels of estrogen in the body. Some women experience very few hot flashes or are not bothered by them. Others, however, experience severe hot flashes that disrupt their daily lives or keep them awake at night. There are several ways to keep hot flashes under control.
  • Lifestyle Management

    According to WebMD.com, avoid smoking, eating spicy foods, or consuming too much alcohol or caffeine, as all of these can worsen hot flashes. Eat a balanced, nutritious diet and exercise regularly. Dress in light, breathable layers, removing a layer when you become too warm. Placing a fan by your bedside and keeping your bedroom's temperature cool can help prevent hot flashes from interrupting sleep. If you are bothered by hot flashes at work, place a fan at your workstation. Practice meditation or breathing exercises. Calming your mind and body can help prevent hot flashes.
  • Hormone Therapy

    Menopausal hormone therapy, or MHT, is a type of therapy that uses hormones to alleviate the symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes. If you have not had a hysterectomy, your doctor will use estrogen and progesterone for your hormone therapy. Progesterone will prevent potential uterine problems that can occur with the use of estrogen alone. If you have had a hysterectomy, your doctor will use estrogen for your hormone therapy. These hormones come in pill or cream form. The Food and Drug Administration recommends using hormone therapy for the shortest time possible. According to the National Institute on Aging, many women report that MHT prevents menopausal symptoms. Consult your doctor to discuss the benefits and potential risks of hormone therapy.
  • Other Medications

    Antidepressants can reduce or prevent many of the symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes. Epilepsy medications, especially gabapentin, can also reduce the number of hot flashes a menopausal woman experiences. None of these drugs, however, have been approved by the FDA for the treatment of menopausal symptoms.

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